First things first – Obtaining Ubuntu

Clearly, if you want to install Ubuntu, you first need to obtain a copy of the “distro” (the distribution – often available on CD-ROM). Sure, you can order a copy on CD from Canonical but, life’s too short to wait for Canada Post, so you need a more efficient means to obtain the software.

Perhaps the fastest method is to have a friendly Ubuntu user burn a copy of their current version onto a blank CD for you. There are lots of advantages to this process – it avoids you having to download the (large) ISO file from the Internet; burning to CD is very quick; and the cost of the CD is almost zero (fifty cents or so). Furthermore, Ubuntu users are almost all evangelists so they will be happy to burn a CD for you.

But, perhaps you are the first kid on your block who is using – or planning to use – Ubuntu. In this case, you really do need to start from square one and download the 700 MB or so of software from the Internet and burn it to CD.

You can always find the latest release of Ubuntu at http://www.ubuntu.com/ – just hit the download link and follow the on-screen instructions.

You should also be aware that there are mirror sites across the world that offer the same software, so you may be able to find a local site with less traffic and so obtain a faster download. A list of mirror sites is posted at http://www.ubuntu.com/getubuntu/downloadmirrors. Scroll down the page, or hit the appr0priate link, to find the complete list of mirror sites, organized by continent.

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